These core teachings are at the heart of the work we do, helping us to name and meet the transitions and changes that we face. This program also forms a portion of the curriculum for the Rites of Passage guide training program.
The Four Directions or Medicine Wheel teachings, first presented to Rites of Passage by Hyemeyohsts Storm over 40 years ago, provide a deep and powerful foundation for understanding ourselves as co-participants in Creation with the entire natural world. In this workshop, we explore each direction through discussion, sharing, time spent with assignments in nature, telling the story of these encounters, and mirroring of the stories by staff and participants.
The idea of the Four Directions is found within many cultures and traditions, often understood as four cycles or seasons of nature, shared by humans:
-Four archetypes of human nature: Spirit, Body, Psyche, Mind
–The seasons of our life cycle, representing birth and infancy (Spring), childhood and early adolescence (Summer), self-consciousness of later adolescence and early adulthood (Fall), full adulthood (Winter) and elderhood (Spring again)
-Orienting our internal process to the landscape: the four directions of the compass
Teachers, counselors, coaches, psychologists and others in the helping professions will find this workshop of value as an in-depth application of eco-psychology and as an opportunity for personal growth. It’s also recommended for those that are planning to undertake a Vision Quest, and for those who wish to renew and deepen the gifts they received on a quest.
This workshop is an experiential event; each day includes time spent in nature.
Mike Bodkin is the Executive Director of Rites of Passage.
Mike has guided and trained people in nature-based transformational programs for over 35 years. .
What participants are saying about the Four Directions/Medicine Wheel workshop:
I attended the Four Directions workshop sponsored by Rites of Passage in January and February of 2021. The wealth of knowledge and experience of the facilitators was comprehensive, organic and reassuring. I felt that I was in the right place at the right time.
Most importantly for me, this workshop confirmed the trajectory of my personal spiritual journey. Each session opened a new perspective of the living energies of the four seasons.
In 1993, I completed a wilderness quest with Rites of Passage. I found the Four Directions workshop a wonderful renewal of my quest and a door that has opened to new and richer spiritual experiences for me. Many thanks to my friends at Rites of Passage.
–Jay Howell, Organizational Consultant, British Columbia
The power of the course is hard to suggest. The time here, on the land and with these people, has led me to great awareness that will help my in my own life. Most importantly, it has opened my heart, connected me to the beauty in humanity and in myself. I know the gifts given to me over these five days are only the beginning.
-Bianca Di Salvo, businesswoman, Yonkers, NY
I was so deeply touched by the territory we explored together in this workshop. The play between solo journeys and reflection made the map of the Wheel come alive. We dove deep into the individual directions and came to discover with each of us the wholeness we embodied, beautifully held in the metaphor inherent in the Wheel itself. I am deeply grateful for how nourished I feel from this community of learning.
-Deb Zucker, Naturopath Physician, Seattle, WA